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January 2, 2020

VMware Widens Its Kubernetes Embrace

George Leopold

VMware continues to move closer to Kubernetes-based containers for managing virtual machines and other cloud infrastructure, reflecting the growing consensus the cluster orchestrator represents a more agile form of virtualization.

The server virtualization leader (NYSE: VMW) signaled its shift to Kubernetes last year with the launch of an initiative dubbed Project Pacific intended to upgrade its flagship vSphere server virtualization software using Kubernetes as its control plane. Reports have since emerged that VMware intends to use emerging MinIO object storage to provision storage via Kubernetes micro-services.

The web site Blocks & File recently unearthed a VMware briefing slide showing Kubernetes pods within its re-worked vSphere cloud native storage architecture linked to MinIO object storage. Among other capabilities, the combination would allow dynamic provisioning of block volumes via the open-source object storage framework.

Among the advantages provided by the marrying of vSphere with Kubernetes could include “persistent data services” based on container orchestration. Another is improved operational consistency between virtual machines and containers, according to the briefing slide.

MinIO touts its open-source object storage as overcoming traditional performance tradeoffs. Along with compatibility with de facto standard Amazon Web Service’s (NASDAQ: AMZN) S3 storage, the company also promotes its approach as scalable, failure tolerant and operationally consistent.

“These are the new metrics in object storage and reflect the usage patterns of modern enterprises—where performance, consistency, scalability, failure domains and S3 compatibility serve as the building blocks for cloud native applications and big data analytics,” MinIO CEO Anand Babu Periasamy noted in a recent blog post.

VMware is also betting existing vSphere users are looking for ways to protect existing investments in virtualization infrastructure. That is among the rationales for its Project Pacific initiative.

“By leveraging Kubernetes as the control plane of vSphere, Project Pacific will enable developers and IT operators to build and manage apps comprised of containers and/or virtual machines,” Jarod Rosoff a VMware vSphere product manager, noted in announcing Project Pacific last August. “This approach will allow enterprises to leverage a single platform to operate existing and modern apps side-by-side.”

Recent items:

MinIO Enjoying Role in Emerging Cloud Architecture

AIOps and the Kubernetes Revolution

-Editor’s note: We will update this story when we hear back from VMware.

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